Reign Review: Stand at My Side

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So much death and darkness afoot in Reign Season 1 Episode 6!

Did I put on Game of Thrones by accident?

Scaring Mary

Okay, no, the deaths on tonight's installment wouldn't have turned many heads on that other show about royals, lust, bloodlust and cool hair.

But the body count - four dead, and all of them via gruesome murder - was a bit of a shock and a tonal shift for this one, with blithe Kenna's subplot the only bit of fun in this otherwise grim hour. I mean, did you ever think you'd witness a fairly graphic stake-burning on The CW?

But it wasn't a change for the worse; if anything, if was an affirmation of Reign's strengths. The show does gossipy soap very well, but it does dark action-drama competently, meaning that there's the potential to throw a lot of different elements in the mix to ensure that the series doesn't get stuck in any ruts.

Going through a dry plot patch while waiting for the next big political intrigue or sex scandal? Throw in some evil druids while we wait! The perfect solution!

True, this episode had less room for the rollicking chemistry between the leads, or Mary and the Ladies, and thus less fiery back-and-forths and fewer notable Reign quotes. That did drag it a bit for me, but just a bit - this show remains an expertly crafted historical soap.

While Mary herself took a backseat this week, Queen Catherine finally stepped into the spotlight, with a great evil queen presence that was somewhere between Maleficent and Joan Collins. She kicked the camp factor up a notch, and it was quite welcome; I was starting to worry that the people on this drama were behaving like normal-ish human beings.

Bash's second murder (that was a murder, right?) came out of left field for me. I suppose we don't actually know enough about Bash to be shocked by his pushing that thief into a ravine, but I guess I'm just generally shocked when someone pushes a thief into a ravine (unless there's, you know, a very strong precedent).

But it did raise the tantalizing idea that we don't actually know this guy at all...and that Mary may be mixing it up with a guy who has worse problems than just not being able to be king. Which is, you know, pretty bad for Mary, but great for us!

If you've already made it this far into the review, you don't need to hear me sing the praises of this show - but I'm going to praise it again. This is one of my favorites of the new season, and a really stand-out example of how to craft a great soap: to create high stakes, but also never take yourselves too seriously. Reign's capacity for lightness and fun - without going overboard into silliness or mockery - is what makes it such a joy to watch.

Official Reign FashionWatch: 10/10! That fur shrug Kenna was wearing was killing me, as was Mary's white cloak. In fact, all of the cloaks were pretty danged sweet. I have truly not felt this degree of televisual fashion lust since Gossip Girl Season 1.

Was Bash justified, or is he secretly psycho? Is Kenna going to find out about Diana? Do you think I could wear a fur shrug to work if I paired it with a pantsuit?


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.1 / 5.0 (78 Votes)

And I'm guessing the 4.1 rating was towards the fact that Francis slept with Olivia, Lol....angry fan girls. And I really don't find anything campy. Everything is written well and believable or unless our definition of campy is different...

@ Tphxitachi+

i agree with you in wrote great, truly are you team franis or bash?? :D

@ denise

I'm team Mary, as a guy fan I lean to where her heart takes her. Sort of like Elena, I'm team Elena. But I'm usually on Stelena more, damn I'm not even sure.
For now I'm on all three ships, Frary is more believable at the moment however. :)
There both great.


5/5 for me. Everything was a plus and Dian was sexy as hell. And the only thing that came from left field was Bash murdering Spencer I believe it was. He was dealing with a lot of angst not wanting to choose an "innocent" man but then kills him in a whim, like WTH.
We really don't know bash, but I thought we knew him well enough. But I'm guessing the Blood Sacrifice had a supernatural Side effect towards bash. Like Blood Lust. My money's more on that. And loved Marys acting, we are seeing more emotion from her as of late.


yes, he needs space to think "clearly" again. Running off to have S** with another girl isn't gonna clear up ANYTHING. Cause when she gets pregnant, things are only gonna get UGLIER. Selfish dude.


I totally understood what Francis was saying. I think he really loves Mary and seeing that kiss made him realize how little perspective he has when it comes to her. They are important people. They make important decisions that cannot be based on personal feelings and everything between him and Mary is personal. He needs the separation so he can think clearly again. He goes running to Olivia hoping to get that space.


Good episode. I'm really not liking Francis he get's mad at Mary and Bash for having a little kiss and the only reason it actually happened was because Mary was mad at him and like she said she wasn't thinking and then he goes off and sleeps with Olivia knowing full well what he's doing and why he's doing it. I liked the burning of the stake it shows that the show isn't all about love triangles and a bunch of other drama but that the show is also really dark. Can't wait to see the next episode.


I was so happy when it was made clear Bash had planned to kill one of the very deserving pagans to pay off his debt but then the creepy guy started talking about Bash's pagan roots in front of the thief. NO!! Knew he would have to die too. Bash is a soldier. He is killing to protect those he loves. Is it right? No. Yet understandable. Compare that to Francis' threat about killing Bash. His own Brother because of jealousy? Who does Mary need to be worried about exactly?


Ok they do have really cool clothes on this show. Kenna is whinning too much. The Queen knows the King is in love with Bash's mother and doesn't worry about it. Her son is the heir even though Bash was born first. Francis is a jerk! He gets mad at Mary for kissing Bash but sleeps with the other girl. He wants to be like his dad and thinks Mary will be like his mom. Little twit! Bash's mom is cool and great. Love the Queen taking control....Love Megan Fellows...she is a great evil Queen.


Omg! That was awesome to watch. The two brothers don't deserve Mary cause Sebastian is a murderer and Francis is weak and childish! He pissed me off going back to Olivia. Yes it was a small kiss between Mary and Sebastian and to me it wasn't passionate. I can't wait to see the next episode. I'm wondering how the writers going to fix Francis and Mary relationship. I love this show!


Dislike dislike francis!! he's just jealous of his brother's small kiss with mary and then he goes and sleeps with another woman. i hope mary has a hot passionate night with bash!!! their kiss was sizzling. and he's more compelling and conflicted. francis annoys me atm.

Spindae 2o

A solid episode once again. I loved Catherine stepping up finally. She was in back fire but she proven stronger and smarter than believed.
The Kenna stuff was a bit annoying and push over but still she is young and even realistic to behave so childish.
The Bash stuff was compeling and as you said the story developt without Mary and the triangle being over used.
The burning scene just right, perfect closure.
Next episode seems even better.

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Reign Season 1 Episode 6 Quotes

Diane: I don't care what you learn, as long as you don't forget.
King Henry: Not with you to remind me.

We have positioned ourselves for the worst kind of pain.


Reign Season 1 Episode 6 Music

  Song Artist
Luke sital singh bottled up tight Bottled Up Tight Luke Sital-Singh iTunes
The joy formidable silent treatment william orbit mix Silent Treatment (William Orbit Mix) The Joy Formidable iTunes
Emiliana torrini tookah Tookah Emiliana Torrini iTunes